...says Denzel Valentine of Big Ten Tourney favorite MSU, which is 5-7 in its last 12 games. Cumong, man.
4-4, 4 minutes in.
As we all await the Handpocalypse, the Michigan Daily has a nice feature out on GRIII and how he stepped up to become a more vocal leader and one of this year's captains.
Worth a read:
Yes indeed folks, Our longtime captain is making a return to the great state of MICHIGAN to watch our beloved Wolverines beat down lil brother. Maybe Novak being there can help MICH to once again win at the Breslin center?
watched the stream versus Towson
Burke is VERY good. Looks to be a true point guard who can also drive or knock down the 3.
He may not be Morris, posting up smaller guards, but he should make the offensive flow much more consistent.......and that could be better than the way Morris ran the offense.
Horford at 250 is a different player, and Smotrycz is carrying his new bulk well, too. And Hardaway is pretty clearly an NBA player to be.
This year's hoops should be serious, and with the crop coming in next year......
Remember when Beilein got here and said he wasnt even used to recruting top 150 guys?
Curious situation with Cronin. If anyone knows the exact nature/diagnosis of his hip injury I’d love to hear it since coverage has been short on specifics.
Cronin didn’t just display a noticeable limp v. Norfolk, he outright dragged one leg behind him anytime he was required to take it up above a trot. Still, he played decent minutes. Two conclusions, 1) something is def wrong (duh) 2) whatever the injury is, the coaches/trainers view it as more of a pain management issue at this point without significant risk of further injury.
I’m not the world’s foremost expert on redshirts. JB’s quote was something to the effect of, “If we redshirt him, we can always burn it latter.” So it appears the “redshirt” v “non-redshirt” discussion boils down to a decision over whether to save Cronin for an absolute emergency, or play him against the rest of the tomato can non-con so that he stands a higher chance of functionality if called on in Big 10 play.
Little to nothing can be gleaned regarding Cronin’s short term or long term potential from his play thus far. But if it is true that JB’s plan was to play one of Beinzig (sp) or Cronin this season, and slim left town, the decision is already made in my mind despite the injury.
The team’s success has put it in a position where missing the tourney this year would be a blow. JB should pull out all the stops. In a season where the prevailing theme has been this team’s ability to accomplish lots of little things which add up to victory, in my estimation one of the most incredible of those small feats has been the ability of M (esp its ‘big’ people) to avoid costly foul trouble. I think it’s a trend that will continue and really help to negate our size disadvantage.
But there are going to be nights in the big 10 where 2, if not all three, of the Sims/Shepard/Gibson trio are forced to play limited minutes due to foul trouble. Whatever else he can or can’t do, Cronin is undeniably 7 feet. He can stick his arms up to contest shots and grab rebounds which Wright cannot. Against Norfolk he didn’t look good getting up and down the floor, but his mobility in the ½ court didn’t appear all that limited by the injury. His conditioning, however, was terrible.
So lets see what he’s got. Let him break a sweat as part of the rotation in upcoming non-con games, and play lots of junk time. Help the conditioning and aid in his comfort on the floor handling the ball and making defensive rotations against live competition. Its not a stretch to say that Cronin’s ability to steal some minutes in 3, 4, or 5 big 10 games would be the determining factor in the outcome of at least one of those games. And in a hotly contested conference where M will likely need to go .500 to make it in, every game is huge.
Anyone out there catch this game and have any thoughts? I saw a couple times the game was supposed to be on BTN, but it wasn’t in Chicago at least.
After killing over an hour on a rosy, boarding on gushing, diary entry regarding this year’s hoops squad and their chances at the tourney (wherein I boldly proclaimed M would win every game it ‘should’ win, save perhaps a single slip-up) I was not pleased to see M 66 Savannah St 64 (OT) in print.
After reading some of the game recaps, my first thought was “hey, maybe this is GOOD sign for the team.” My second thought was “holy shit, have I become that much of a homer? Dear God.”
Back to the first thought. M got down by 20 at the half, playing in the mortuary that is Chrysler whenever the students leave town. I liked JB’s halftime approach, lightening things up as opposed to fire and brimstone. They make an immediate second half run behind a barrage of Manny FTs then get some timely Novak triples. Sims goes 9-12 from the floor (with JB intimating in his post game comments that many came inside) and hits the game winner. Basically they got their shit together and showed some mettle in a game they almost certainly would have lost last year. And if it’s a game they would have lost last year but didn’t, by definition that is a positive, right?
Anyone who saw the game disagree with that? M had a typical ‘07 dusty dry spell in the first, going 8 minutes without a basket, while reverting to the ‘07 TO fest with 12 and allowing the SS to shoot 15 of 21.
Was M taking bad shots or where they just not falling? At what point did Sims get involved in the game or was he fairly consistent throughout?
Improved ball handling was one of my favorite aspects of ‘08 so far, not just cutting down on TO’s, but confidence in handling the ball. What happened with the first half? Careless? Pressing? Succumbing to the opponent’s pressure?
How did Savannah St shoot the ball so well? Was it a matter of failing to close out on shooters out of the 1-3-1? Offensive glass? Points off TOs? Bad luck?
Was Manny forcing a lot of fouls or was he getting the benefit of the doubt on close calls (14-14 on the night, gotta love that no matter what)?
Finally, please, someone, describe Novak’s blown dunk.